It’s the time of year for everyone to fill out their brackets for the NCAA basketball tournament. I used to follow this closely; now, hardly at all. I freely admit I don’t even know which are the best teams anymore. I even more freely admit that I don’t really care all that much. Now, I know in some circles that may sound heretical—I mean, I’m even from Indiana, the basketball center of gravity.

But I don’t begrudge people wasting devoting time to it, if they really think it has some eternal value, although for the life of me I’m not sure what that might be. Goodness, I’m beginning to sound like a crotchety old man. Let me redeem myself. In the spirit of the bracket frenzy, I offer some possibilities from the political arena. How about if we begin with the Reid Budget brackets?

Well, now, that was exciting. He seems to draw a blank every year. What next? Something in the international realm?

Surely there’s a lot of truth in that bracket. Very useful. Let’s come back to presidential politics. The primary season is “only” three years away; it’s never too early to consider the options.

Are we really so certain of the right side of this bracket? Chills running down the spine. Not the happy kind.

What about the overall picture for the nation?

Looks a little overwhelming, doesn’t it? Yet it does bring clarity to the current situation.

I hope this little exercise in bracketing has mollified anyone offended by my earlier comments. I trust I’ve redeemed myself.